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The Week That Were - Wemyss's Appalling Hobby:
From the Party Guilty of Committing 'Gate of Ivory, Gate of Horn'
The Week That Were

It will, I’m quite certain, delight all of her friends to know that the Baker’s Daughter – all twenty scone stone of her – is doing well.  Her current sandwich o’ the day – roast beef, Bradenham ham, caramelised onion, pickle, and blue vinny – is going down a bomb.


Why, yes, it ‘do be toime vur’ a quick look ’round at local doings.



You may recall that Mr Zac Purchase and his rowing partner Mr Mark Hunter recently took the gold in Peiping for Team GB in the double sculls lightweight class.  His gran, Mary – ‘Mrs Purchase’ to you lot – who lives upaway in Corsley, travelled to the Inscrutable Orient to see his triumph, and is now returned home.  With the typical indomitability of our OAPs, she was on parade in support of the WI at the annual Corsley Show on Bank Holiday Monday, and jetlag be damned.  (Lacock Fair also went well, I may add.)


Equally indomitable, thank God, is Mick Channon, a Shrewton lad raised in Orcheston, whom footer fans will recall as the pride of the Saints.  He is now engaged in respectable pursuits, as a trainer (horseracing variety).  He and his son were injured in a crash on the M1 on Thursday; I am gratified to report that they are recovering.  Sadly, his mate Tim Corby, the agent, was killed.


Another survivor is rescue Lab Homer, owned by the Bratton town crier and his lady wife, who has survived being hit by a train on the line between Westbury and Hungerford.


On the subject of horses, Tidworth Polo Club are making up the gap occasioned by the loss of the stables at Tidworth Barracks.  There is still much to be done, if Army and Navy polo – which is played by the lower deck and Other Ranks as well as by officers – is to thrive.  You might consider shoving a few quid the way of the appeal.


You might equally consider aiding the good work of Durrington Conservation Group, who are engaged in clearing the River Avon of invasive Himalayan balsam.


Returning to trains, the Evening Star, the last steam train built by British Railways, is coming home to Swindon for a two-year museum stay.  Anoraks such as my good self are chuffed.  Homer the Lab, on the other paw, is walking very warily, naturally enough.


Village panto auditions are already beginning.  Can it be that late in the year already?


Congratulations to Holt Bowls Club, who saw several members gracing the All-England Championships.


Execration to the yobs and tearaways who caused £10,000 damage at a farm near West Ashton Hill, Trowbridge.  Sodding little vandals.  Anyone with any information should contact PC Emily Thomas on 0845 4087000.


There’s nothing, sadly, unnatural in finding such serpents even in Eden.  I must, however, say that I was staggered to see, on the Beeb’s Wiltshire page, that the story and snaps gallery for the local Wilderness Gathering was preceded by an overwrought warning that clicking on the link would subject one to graphic images that might disturb the sensitive souls.  Well, where the devil do they imagine meat comes from (in this instance, venison)?  Et in Arcadia ego applies with peculiar force to lambs and beasts of venery, even in Edenic circs.


More happily, the Beeb Wiltspage features a retrospective of the life of Ben Spreadbury, born to the farming life in 1920 in the Pewsey Vale, and a farmer’s boy between the wars.  Well worth a dekko.


On a personal note, despite the dire prognostications, the Twelfth was not inglorious.  Quite a decent bag, actually, at least in Derbs, and I hear in parts of Wales as well.  Scotland and the Seriously North of England were I understand less successful, which is a shame.  Yet hope persists.


Or so it seems from this demi-Eden paradise I have the unmerited fortune to indwell and from which this is the latest news, which I trust will at least divert and amuse the less solemnly high-minded amongst you.  So long as there are yet folk who can be charmed by the small doings of countryside and village, the world may yet be saved.  And as we wait the end of days (or at least the proper time for dining on the grouse of the Twelfth: I like my game to be just as I like my lads, well-hung), at least there’s good nosh thanks to the Baker’s Daughter.



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10 comments or Leave a comment
lily_fayline From: lily_fayline Date: August 30th, 2008 02:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
I am indeed exceedingly diverted by your report, it's good to know that globalisation isn't all-encompassing yet!
wemyss From: wemyss Date: August 31st, 2008 06:52 pm (UTC) (Link)

Globalisation is glo-balls, say we all.

And many of these horny-handed sons of toil are armed and primed with scrumpy.
blamebrampton From: blamebrampton Date: August 30th, 2008 02:21 pm (UTC) (Link)
What panto are they planning?

Glad to hear the dog survived, and I hope the polo appeal does well.

And as to that warning, I have long been of the belief that meat ought to come illustrated with images of the animal it's from (and possibly the degree of difficulty that farming said animal entails) so that people can remember why farmers deserve every penny that makes it back to them.
shezan From: shezan Date: August 30th, 2008 08:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
What panto are they planning?

I was about to ask!

Wonderful ruralizing. Friendly pat to the lab.
wemyss From: wemyss Date: August 31st, 2008 06:53 pm (UTC) (Link)


Amesbury – who are the first to start auditioning hereabouts, so far as I know – are putting on 'A Royal Flush'.
wemyss From: wemyss Date: August 31st, 2008 06:52 pm (UTC) (Link)

Hear, hear.

Quite so.
sgt_majorette From: sgt_majorette Date: August 30th, 2008 05:36 pm (UTC) (Link)

A Caution from a County Over...

From the farm journals of the owner of the only commercial cashmere flock in the UK; she also raises Bowmont sheep, products of the MacAulay Institute, which is in the business of practising inappropriate charms on sheep and goats:

from Devon--
"It's happened - some idiot has imported Holstein cattle from Germany to a farm near Tiverton (our nearest town 12 miles away) and 8 of them have just tested positive for BTV! Why anyone would import stock without knowing exactly if, how and when they were vaccinated and understanding the full implications of the timing etc is beyond me. Just because the EU regulations allows free movement of any animal within the protection zone (and England is largely PZ along with all of Europe) doesn't mean you should actually go ahead and do it! By importing those animals the farmer has put all stock in this area at risk. We are just so grateful that we vaccinated and persuaded our neighbour to do so as well. Another close by chose not to and I dread to think how he must be feeling now. It takes 3 weeks for full immunity to build up after the second vaccination in the case of goats and cattle so now is just too late. Any farmer round here who has not vaccinated is going to be sitting on tenterhooks until the frosts arrive and kill the midges."

< /pastorale >
wemyss From: wemyss Date: August 31st, 2008 06:54 pm (UTC) (Link)

I know. I know.

Bloody EU.
tekalynn From: tekalynn Date: August 30th, 2008 08:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Rather close shaves there. I'm glad most came out so well.

My condolences to Mr Corby's family and friends.
wemyss From: wemyss Date: August 31st, 2008 06:54 pm (UTC) (Link)

It's a rough life.

The countryside and what not. Et ego and all that.
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